Shippee endorsement

September 7, 2014

It is my pleasure to endorse Laura Sibilia for Representative for our district.

I have known Laura for many years in a variety of ways. As fellow parents of Dover School students, I shared many fundraising events, sports activities and field trips. Laura was and is an involved parent, which showed through her participation in and attendance at school concerts, sporting events and field trip chaperoning. Her commitment to our school and to education for all students led her to a position on the School Board, where she has become an expert on Act 60/68, outcomes of funding mechanisms for education, and lobbying Montpelier for equitable education finances

I served on the Mount Snow Valley Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors when Laura was the Executive Director. Firsthand, I witnessed the commitment and passion she brought to the job, and her willingness to always go the extra mile, to seek out ways to develop new programs and initiatives that would benefit our valley. She was, and is, driven to bring to and enhance economic vitality in southern Vermont, and especially in the Deerfield Valley.

I will say I don’t agree with Laura on 100% of the issues. But in those areas where we don’t see eye to eye, I have always found her to be willing to listen and try to understand my point of view, and to respectfully challenge my positions. She brings a formidable store of knowledge to every conversation and, although she is passionate about her beliefs, she is also open-minded and accessible to those who disagree.

During Tropical Storm Irene, I saw Laura grab hold of the immensity of the problems and start finding solutions. From day one, she used the Chamber’s reach to get information out quickly and to as many people as possible, and she was a potent advocate for siting a FEMA center locally, sparing those who had lost so much the added challenge of having to travel to Brattleboro just to receive help. She postponed a planned career change in order to be here for her valley, and we are fortunate that she did.

In all, I believe that Laura will bring all these traits and tools to bear in her position as Representative. She will not let Montpelier forget we are here, and she will do what it takes to be the best Representative possible.

Sarah Shippee

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